This week's Official UK Singles Chart

1 IT'S RAINING MEN (Geri Halliwell)

A rather quiet week for big new pop singles means that Geri Halliwell quite comfortably spends a second week at the top of the charts with her Weather Girls cover. Thus the single becomes the fifth single this year to spend longer than a week at the top (compared to just seven in 2000) and only the second single from a solo Spice Girl to do so (Emma Bunton's What Took You So Long was the first a few weeks ago). Meanwhile S Club 7 remain nicely tucked in a Number 2 and it is also worth noting that producer Stephen Lipson also has a production credit on Don't Stop Movin'. Having said that he is merely credited with "additional production" on the S Club 7 track whereas he was the sole occupant of the producers chair for It's Raining Men, thus I'm not completely convinced he can be credited with knocking himself off the top of the chart.
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3 RIDE WIT' ME (Nelly)

Nelly's third hit single ends up being far and away his biggest. His debut Country Grammar shot straight to Number 7 in November last year but the follow-up E.I. landed several places lower at Number 11 and it looked as if he was going to have to settle for a succession of ever smaller hits. Not so it seems as this unashamedly commercial single charges straight into the Top 3 and I suspect in the process turn the man from St. Louis into a bone-fide star.


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4 YOU ARE ALIVE (Fragma)

Fragma's parade of vocalists continues as Maria Rubia is cast aside for her own solo career (see below) and into her place comes Damae who has all the right credentials, ie she is blonde, can dance dreamily in the video and can apply her somewhat breathless vocals to this swirling yet energetic trance hit. Fragma's last hit Every Time You Need Me spent a fortnight at Number 3 back in January and this third successive Top 5 hit proves that for the moment they have a formula which works to pefection.
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6 WHO'S THAT GIRL (Eve)

Well given that Nelly is now officially a star, who can we label as the next big thing in rap? Eve Jeffers may well bet the answer, the only female dubbed hip enough to hang out with the Ruff Ryders and whose album Scorpion attracted rave reviews when released back in March. Mexican trumpts provide the hook amidst the funk grooves and biting lyrics and the track has become dubbed "The Radio One single" in some places owing to what has almost seemed like saturation airplay it has received from the national station over the last few weeks. Gwen Stefani is set to appear on her next single. I'm almost too scared to be critical.


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10 ONE WILD NIGHT (Bon Jovi)

So you are Bon Jovi. Your career is rapidly approaching its 20th anniversary of which most of the last 15 have seen you being hailed as rock superstars. So how do you keep things fresh? Their answer here is to take the bold step of releasing a live album of which One Wild Night is the title track. Perhaps a little bizarrely the single isn't actually live, instead being a re-recorded version of a track which first appeared on last years Crush album. Very bizarre but still nothing less than a cracking rock single that proved that the band aren't even close to burning out. In chart terms it has done the trick and returns Bon Jovi to the Top 10 for the first time since Say It Isn't So hit Number 10 in September last year, their 14th Top 10 single as a band (Jon Bon Jovi has had two further Top 10 hits as a solo artist). Meanwhile we await their first live single proper. This one does at least contain live versions of Lay Your Hands On Me and I Believe which aren't on the album, but I can't be the only one who wants to hear a full on stadium version of You Give Love A Bad Name blasting out on the Top 40 show.
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22 SPITTING IN THE WIND (Badly Drawn Boy)

The original album version was of course Pissing In The Wind but for the delicate sensibilities of the public as a whole (despite the fact that the titular urination only appears in the first line of the song) for the single release, this track from Hour Of Bewilderbeast has been re-recorded in a politer and dare I say it far, far better version. This is in fact the best Badly Drawn Boy single yet, a lilting country-flavoured ballad which features no less a star than Joan Collins in the video. Damon Gough's first single of 2001, it is also his biggest smash to date, beating the Number 26 peak scaled by Disillusion in September last year.


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27 DAYS GO BY (Dirty Vegas)

Dirty Vegas (aka Paul Harris, Steve Smith and Ben Harris) are out to be the next set of club superstars. Unusually for a dance hit this did not begin life as an anonymous white label which was subsequently picked up by a major label for release but was instead deliberately circulated to prominent DJs as a "test pressing". Scan the dance charts from the last few months and you will probably spot the single except that the credit will read "Hydrogen Rockers". Quite simply the guys changed their minds between the "test pressing" and this release. Hydrogen Rockers is the name they will use for remix work but their own work and forthcoming album will be by Dirty Vegas. Glad we could get that cleared up.


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29 GROUNDED (My Vitriol)

The fourth chart single for My Vitriol and their second Top 40 hit sees them treading water somewhat, despite the boost in their popularity that their support slot for the Manic Street Preachers will have given them. Grounded does at least beat the Number 31 peak of their last hit Always Your Way but the truth is that the most interesting thing about this single is the presence of their astonishing cover version of Madonna's Oh Father which has to be heard to be believed.
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32 NO DREAM IMPOSSIBLE (Lindsay D)

Grateful thanks to the entire net-wired population of Denmark who mailed me in outrage last week to point out that the Eurovision Song Contest was indeed taking place in their country. Actually it is worth taking back much of the speculation about Linsday D's performance at the weekend as not only did she hit the note that the entire nation was holding its breath over but she put on a performance that won her an enormous ovation from the worryingly large stadium crowd that were watching the show live. Sadly that is all she won as the UK slumped to dismal low in the international voting, No Dream Impossible eventually finishing in 15th place and a long way behind eventual winners Estonia who thus broke the Scandinavian monopoly on the competition that has persisted for the last couple of years. Actually there seemed to be an overall sense of changing times in the contest as Ireland (who virtually owned the trophy in the 1990s) finished even lower than we did. Still at the very least Linsday D beat the 16th place of Nikki French from last year and even the Number 34 peak of her entry Don't Play That Song Again. There is still every chance that this single will improve on its chart placing next week as the sales impact from her international television performance is felt but by the looks of things it will be next year at the very least before we have another massive Eurovision smash hit. I'm just left wondering what happened the FA Cup Final records this year...
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34 SHINE ON (Scott & Leon)

The second chart hit for Scott and Leon, the followup to You Used To Hold Me which made Number 19 in September last year. Like its predecessor, Shine On is a reworking of an older club classic. The track was originally recorded by Degrees Of Motion and was a club smash first time around in 1992 but could only reach Number 42. It took a Richie Jones remix two years later to turn the track into a chart smash, the new mix made Number 8 in March 1994.
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40 SAY IT (Maria Rubia)

Speaking, as we did earlier, of Fragma here indeed is their former singer about to forge a career for herself. Maria Rubia was the set of lungs on Every Time You Need Me and this week makes her chart debut in her own right with a pretty piece of pop-trance that actually isn't too offensive but hardly the track that is going to turn her into either a chart or club star. Still, even though her hit has done nothing more than become the first single since September last year to enter the charts at Number 40 she has at least made more of her association with Fragma than Coco who of course helped them to the top of the charts when her vocals from I Need A Miracle were turned into Toca's Miracle a year ago.


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